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The public sector needs more ‘Heads of Digital’

2 Jan

Truly ‘social’ businesses understand that social media offers more than just some new channels through which to shove out top-down, one-way marketing and PR.

Instead of using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube  and the rest to shout about their products, many are providing tailored advice and support and building long-term relationships using the technologies.

They are engaging before, during and after the sale.

In fact, the cleverest companies have gone further still and have embedded digital across their organisations to conduct research and gather intelligence, to connect customers who might be able to help each other, to look for new employees, generate growth ideas and much more.

They are a beacon for the public sector.

Yet, the public sector – excepting some notable and laudable parts – has not yet caught on. Continue reading

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A free social media strategy for your business

20 Dec

Building a social media programme is easier than it sounds

I was talking casually to a business owner the other day about what he could get out of social media.

It occurred to me afterwards that the advice I gave him is relevant to you too whether you are small, medium or humungous; whether you sell shark tanks, speech therapy or bleach.

So here’s the beginnings of a plan for your business – base your programme or strategy on this and contact me on Twitter or in the comments if I can be of further help. If this is useful, all I ask in return is that you ‘retweet’ the post or share it in your preferred way. Continue reading

People don’t buy what you do – they buy why you do it.

9 Nov

I’m sorry – I should have told you about this ages ago.

Because it has the power to change entirely the way you want the world to see you.

If you run a business – in fact if you’re selling anything; a political message, poetry, a marriage proposal or your gardening skills – I implore you to set aside 18 minutes of your life to look at this talk by Simon Sinek, the slightly awkward but brilliant author of Start With Why.

These 18 magical, powerful, inspiring minutes get right to the nub of why some of us succeed in our communications and some of us fail.

Leaders, Sinek says, don’t start by telling you what they are doing, or how they are doing it. No, whether they are Martin Luther-King, Apple’s Steve Jobs or the Wright Brothers, they begin by telling you why they are doing it.

What does this mean for brands and how they position themselves in the marketplace?

It means this:

You should be communicating about what you are, not what you sell.

Or as Sinek so eloquently puts it:

“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”.

Can we save local newspapers?

13 Oct

Can we save local newspapers?

I’m not going to answer that question.

Yet.

But politicians of all persuasions are certainly queuing up to tell us that we should try.

The demise of the local rag would be a tragedy, they say. We’d be losing a pillar of local democracy, they tell us. “My best mate’s a media baron, who’s going to help me stay in power,” they often add. Hang on, that last bit’s not right.

Meanwhile consumers of media are changing their habits at a frightening pace, largely at the expense of the Press.

I’m researching a blog for the near future on whether we should be concerned about the fact most local newspapers are haemmorhaging readers.

I want to know what, if anything, can be done about it and whether we should do anything about it.

If you’ve read your local paper and you’ve got a single idea about how it could adapt to the internet age – how it could improve so you’d be more inclined to buy it (or keep buying it) – I’d be really interested in your views

I’ve put some questions below to  prompt you but please feel free to rap freestyle, either in the comments section at the bottom of this post or by emailing me privately at michaeltaggart[at]yahoo[dot]co[dot]uk (I’ve written it like that to stop evil web spam robots taking my family hostage). Continue reading

Using Twitter ‘favourites’ as a testimonials page

9 Oct

Michael Taggart in the bath this morning

A Eureka moment came to me this morning as I was fiddling around with my Twitter ‘favourites’ in perplexed bafflement – wondering why on Earth anyone would ever want to ‘favourite’ any tweets.

“Of course! Businesses can use Twitter favourites as a testimonials page,” I exclaimed, simultaneously applauding and reaching round to pat myself on the back.

Except, a few minutes into marveling at the simplistic beauty of my discovery, Google told me that businesses were already doing it the world over. That pesky Google!

Ah well, there goes the Nobel Prize for Social Media. But it’s clearly an idea people like so I’ll share it anyway:

What I’m saying is that businesses and brands should look through their mentions on Twitter and ‘favourite’ the ones that speak highly of them, recommend them or praise them. Why? Because you can link to your ‘favourites’ page from, say, your website and replace your old-style testimonials page with the new Twitter link, calling it “What They Say” or “Testimonials” or something similar. Continue reading

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